Ports and terminals: major seaport(s): Antsiranana (Diego Suarez), Mahajanga, Toamasina, Toliara (Tulear)
Definition: This entry lists major ports and terminals primarily on the basis of the amount of cargo tonnage shipped through the facilities on an annual basis. In some instances, the number of containers handled or ship visits were also considered. Most ports service multiple classes of vessels including bulk carriers (dry and liquid), break bulk cargoes (goods loaded individually in bags, boxes, crates, or drums; sometimes palletized), containers, roll-on/roll-off, and passenger ships. The listing leads off with major seaports handling all types of cargo. Inland river/lake ports are listed separately along with the river or lake name. Ports configured specifically to handle bulk cargoes are designated as oil terminals or dry bulk cargo ports. LNG terminals handle liquefied natural gas (LNG) and are differentiated as either export, where the gas is chilled to a liquid state to reduce its volume for transport on specialized gas carriers, or import, where the off-loaded LNG undergoes a regasification process before entering pipelines for distribution. As break bulk cargoes are largely transported by containers today, the entry also includes a listing of major container ports with the corresponding throughput measured in twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs). Some ports are significant for handling passenger traffic and are listed as cruise/ferry ports. In addition to commercial traffic, many seaports also provide important military infrastructure such as naval bases or dockyards.
Source: CIA World Factbook - This page was last updated on January 20, 2018